What Two Years of Self-Harm Recovery Has Taught Me

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September 10th is a special date. It’s the date that I decided to get help.

Two years ago, I was depressed and suffering from PTSD. The way I coped? Harming myself. My self-harm issues began in 7th grade when, after a particularly not-great school year, I experimented with self-injury. It started as an experiment, it ended up as an addiction. For nearly a decade, self-harm became my go-to way to work through life. It was the only way I knew how to handle rejection or disappointment.

But two years ago, I decided that was enough. It was time to heal, both physically and emotionally.

I am currently working on a more in-depth series on self-harm as well as several posts on recovery for those suffering from self-harm. I hope to use The Glitter Diaries as a platform where we can have discussions about mental health in a judgement-free environment.

I’ve learned so much about recovery and about myself these past few years. I’ve learned about forgiveness, resilience, determination, and helping others.

Learn to forgiving yourself is just as important as learning to forgive others Click To Tweet

I learned that I will fight for myself.

I will fight for the life I hope to live one day. I will never stop fighting. I have lost many battles with self-harm in the past but I am out to win the war, even if it spans across the rest of my life. In action movies, we see the brave protagonist admirably fight for their lives against a super tough villain.

That’s me, y’all. Except I am fighting something inside my head and it happens each and every day, not just at the climax point. And my weapons aren’t grenades and rocket launchers, they’re therapy, positive affirmations, and reflective exercises.

Recovery is NOT a destination. Click To Tweet

That epic battle I mentioned above? It’s a daily thing. I thought I would reach a stage when I suddenly never thought of self-harm or felt triggered. I was wrong. Recovery is not, nor will it ever be, a destination. It will always be a journey; it will always be a decision that I choose each day. And that’s okay.

I have an amazing support system.

I am surrounded by people that want me to succeed. I am connected to a close-knit group of friends and family that are rooting for me. My husband is a great example. He encourages me on my bleh days, celebrates with me on my best days, and hugs me on my worst. I have seen the incredible effects of leaning on your friends and family when you need that extra bit of help.

I actively remove negative feeds and influences. 

I have gained this awesome skill of cutting shit out of my life. Seriously. If, for one second, I feel like some ad or social media post is triggering, I block it. I unfollow anything or anyone that spiels negativity or triggering content.

And you know what? It’s fucking great. Not a single fuck is given if someone’s pride is bruised by the loss of a follower. There are more important things.

You can do this, too! Check out my post on cleaning through our social feeds! 

I stay informed but not obsessed. 

Before, I fed myself feeds and feeds of pro self-harm content from a variety of online sources. It fueled my addiction. Now, I have all of those old sites blocked and I focus on reading blogs that inspire me to continue on my journey.

It’s important to stay up-t0-date with what is going on with mental health education and development but it’s equally important to not add I have learned the balance of staying informed with any trends or notable stories without filling my mind with harmful content.

I am working towards a party where I can help others. 

This is one of the most exciting developments.

I’m in my grad school program for Marriage and Family Therapy. I am on my way to becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist so I can work with individuals and families affected by self-harm and PTSD. More on this new chapter to come!

Two years of recovery has taught me so much. I have gained so much from this. I have so much more to gain.

Recovery has been worth it all.

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